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Here’s what’s new or different in the Paper Mario: TTYD remake

Paper Mario jumping out of warp pipe

With the imminent release of Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door remake on the Nintendo Switch, fans may wonder what changes were made and what differences exist from the Gamecube original.

No generation of gaming is complete without the presence of a certain Italian plumber. Not content with innovating platformers, the Mario franchise moved onto other genres, with Super Mario RPG being a runaway success. However, that game would never get a direct sequel.

Instead, Super Mario RPG 2 became the beloved Paper Mario. The game was unlike any other Mario game before it, with a unique papercraft style and surprisingly engaging narrative. It was successful enough to warrant a sequel with The Thousand-Year Door. The sequel proved to be even better, with many lauding it as the best game in the franchise to this day. In 2024, fans can relive the magic with Intelligent Systems’ remake of Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door

What has changed in the Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door remake?

Unlike its predecessor, Nintendo opted for a total remake of Thousand Year Door.

As the most critically acclaimed game in the franchise, Nintendo may have wanted to pull out all the stops to improve the game. This led to several changes to its gameplay and graphics, as well as some tweaks to its story. Here are the biggest changes coming to Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door remake:

  • HD visuals
  • Improved lighting and effects
  • New sounds added for character dialog
  • Runs at 30 FPS
  • QoL improvements with Partner Ring, fast traveling
  • Improved tutorials
  • Story changes

The remake boasts a much higher resolution than the original, with smoother animations and an art style reminiscent of Paper Mario: Sticker Star. Eagle-eyed fans will notice characters have thicker paper textures, almost like cardboard, and some have visible seams. Characters noticeably have more expressive emotion, with some NPCs no longer locked to just exclamation marks.

Dynamic lighting also makes the paper setpieces shine. The developers updated the aspect ratio, and the team rebuilt many scenes to accommodate the extra space afforded by 16:9 resolutions rather than the 4:3 of old. Controversially, Nintendo confirmed the remake will run at 30 frames per second, despite the original running at 60 frames per second.

Paper Mario Thousand Year Door Screenshot

There are also key quality-of-life changes to the gameplay. This includes a quick-access character wheel dubbed the Partner Wheel and an updated fast-travel system to cut back on the downtime of the original game. As for the story, the remake adds some new NPCs for Mario to interact with, most notably a new Toad that offers gameplay tips and tutorials.

Notably, a preview of the game features localization changes to the English dub that may hint at Vivian’s transgender status getting localized. Vivian’s gender wasn’t addressed in the English localization, with the character being bullied by the Shadow Sirens for vague reasons.

Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door Remake will launch on May 23, 2024, on the Nintendo Switch. 

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Written by Gab Hernandez

Gab Hernandez has a particular love for video games that give players control over the narrative direction, such as Divinity: Original Sin 2 and Disco Elysium. Gab spends just as much time playing games as they do gushing about them online to anyone who will listen. Their work has also been seen on TheGamer, Gfinity, and Wargamer, and you can follow them on Twitter / X at @HardlyWorkinGab.

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